Some patterns straddle the categories of imitative and attractor flies, and the Peacock Caddis is a great example. When caddisflies are hatching or ovipositing, this is a great fly to drift or skate across the surface. But even when there are no bugs on the water, the Peacock Caddis will often draw strikes. Its general bugginess makes it a good stand-in for a variety of insects, including terrestrials.
In this great video, Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions shows you exactly how to tie this venerable pattern, and he uses techniques described in recent “One-Minute Tying Tips” videos, as well: The Secrets to Using Peacock Herl, How to Create a Neat, Clean Hair Wing, and Understanding Different Kinds of Hackle. If you have any trouble with this pattern, go back and watch these more-specific lessons.
Hook: Standard dry-fly hook (here, a Dai-Riki #300), sizes 12-18.
Thread: Olive, 6/0 or 140-denier.
Body: Peacock herl.
Wing: Gray deer hair.
Head: Tying thread.